Maryland doctor blames insurance costs for stopping HIV care
October 15 2004 12:00 AM ET
Frederick County, Md., infectious-disease specialist Paul G. Rausch will stop treating HIV patients as of November 30 to limit his exposure to lawsuits and higher malpractice insurance premiums. "I can no longer assume the additional liability of caring for complex and complicated infectious-disease patients," Rausch wrote in a letter to patients at the end of September. On September 14, the Maryland Insurance Administration approved a 33% rate hike for Medical Mutual Liability Insurance Society of Maryland, the state's largest insurer of doctors. Rausch said his premium will go from $19,000 this year to $28,500 next year. His decision will not immediately cut his rates but will help him avoid lawsuits and further rate increases, he said. Rausch and colleagues at Oncology Care Consultants will continue to treat cancer and hematology patients. The end of his infectious-disease practice will leave only one private physician in the county to treat about 130 HIV patients. (AP)
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